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Can You Teach Street Sense/Savvy?


Razors Edge
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...or is that not something that is easily changed?  

I'm sure @Randomguy sees this too, but I have to assume that some of the multitude of idiots I see walking on the wrong side of a sidewalk, struggling to cross intersections, confused at getting from point A-point B, etc. aren't ALL tourists visiting the city.  Likewise when out riding, some folks just seems confused/puzzled/wrong in how they ride a bike.

Is there hope for them or are they just destined to always be a mess?

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Lack of situational awareness. I think it has to be taught at a young age so it’s natural when they are adults. Even though I never lived in a major urban area until now, I’ve always been able to blend in quickly simply because I was taught to look and listen. 

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Just now, groupw said:

Lack of situational awareness. I think it has to be taught at a young age so it’s natural when they are adults. Even though I never lived in a major urban area until now, I’ve always been able to blend in quickly simply because I was taught to look and listen. 

Yep - I was thinking you could drop someone like @Longjohn in the middle of NYC or London and he's fine.  Drop @Dottles in the same place? :frantics: 

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23 minutes ago, JerrySTL said:

It will take a while if Darwin is correct. Actually things have been made a little too safe so that idiots tend to live longer and reproduce.

Is this why there's warning labels on hair dryers telling me not to use in the shower?

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5 minutes ago, BR46 said:

Is this why there's warning labels on hair dryers telling me not to use in the shower?

To some, that warning message may cause paralysis.  They will be unable to either shower or dry their hair.  You see it all the time in the city - some rube gets all brain frozen right in the middle of the sidewalk, on an escalator, or at some other busy chokepoint.  Almost can smell the neurons burning away as they are confronted by something out of their realm of imagination.

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8 minutes ago, Razors Edge said:

some rube gets all brain frozen right in the middle of the sidewalk, on an escalator, or at some other busy chokepoint.

Hmmm...  the drugs they took may have quit working and they couldn't deal with reality? 

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Just now, ChrisL said:

I think it’s a learned behavior more so than something that’s just in you.  It comes from experience but some would catch on quicker than others.

It's mostly adults I see doing the craziest things.  Sometimes they have kids in tow, and they are passing that stupidity to the next generation.

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Some of that behavior isn't "street sense", it's just that no one ever taught them.  "Street sense" is definitely learned, enough attempts to cross a street in NYC, you'll figure out to watch for the yellow ones, they don't stop.  Common sense can get you through until you learn street sense, but isn't taught or learned.  And after all that, some people are just idiots.

And if you look in the right places, you can learn where the best street corn is.

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2 minutes ago, 12string said:

Some of that behavior isn't "street sense", it's just that no one ever taught them.  "Street sense" is definitely learned, enough attempts to cross a street in NYC, you'll figure out to watch for the yellow ones, they don't stop.  Common sense can get you through until you learn street sense, but isn't taught or learned.  And after all that, some people are just idiots.

Maybe it's more "how did that sense not develop by adulthood?" sort of thing coupled with some folks are just idiots, and a LOT are below average.  

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Agree, that navigating in streets and what to do safely with intentional awareness by looking around one's environment  is learned. Safety most definitely is learned and needs to be embedded and taught in person with adult, in childhood onward.

I continue to be shocked how people jaywalk and they don't even look both ways before crossing. They expect every car/truck/bus to stop for them.  Or  blissfully unaware, a car, cyclist has to accelerate to get up a hill...

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1 hour ago, Longjohn said:

I didn’t like driving my semi in NYC.

I don't like driving anything in NYC.  I don't even like walking in NYC.  I'd rather drive through Boston than NYC and some will tell you that's just plain crazy.

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2 minutes ago, maddmaxx said:

I don't like driving anything in NYC.  I don't even like walking in NYC.  I'd rather drive through Boston than NYC and some will tell you that's just plain crazy.

I didn’t mind Boston.

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13 minutes ago, Longjohn said:

I didn’t mind Boston.

Again, self-aware and skilled drivers, pedestrians, or cyclists can be dropped anywhere and do fine.  It's those sketchy ones that gum up the works so bad

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5 hours ago, Razors Edge said:

Yep - I was thinking you could drop someone like @Longjohn in the middle of NYC or London and he's fine.  Drop @Dottles in the same place? :frantics: 

I'm the king of anybody pulling street chit on me.  It's not too hard to figure out.  Think sex, drugs, money, extortion, violence, and theft.  I'm sure you got this nailed too RE as this is your natural way of living @Razors Edge.  

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There are some people that have no clue what's going on around them and they never get any street smarts.

I grew up in area where you learned street smarts while young or you were in trouble.

When I went away to IIT, in Leroy Brown's South Side of Chicago, I was told that if a group of people was walking toward me on the same side of the street, cross over to the other side: if they did the same, run like hell.

I was also told to start keeping my wallet in my front pocket.  I still do that.

A lifetime of that kind of advice and you have to learn a little street smarts.

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Growing up in NYC, I was generally taught to be aware of your surroundings and notice people who seem to be behaving unusually.    I've been on trips with friends who were not raised in a city and at times we'd be walking and I'd be saying softly "pick up your pace, stay with us and let's cross the street" and they're dawdling along, looking n store windows and saying "why cross the street?  don't we want to go that way?"  I marvel at their lack of awareness and they probably think I'm paranoid and over anxious.

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8 hours ago, Razors Edge said:

...because you are SANE!  But surely you also didn't drive like a self-centered, situationally unaware sociopath!

...when I drove the big articulated ladder trucks here, it was usually lights and siren all the way.  I'm not saying I was situationally unaware, but was definitely blowing through all the stoplights. 99% of the time, we just should have responded in a saner manner.  But that was not allowed.

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